Wednesday, November 20, 2013

James Franco's Sex Scenes; Adam Levine Sex Appeal; Pastor Found Guilty;

James Franco's Sex Scenes

I posted before I'm reading James Franco's new novel, Actors Anonymous, and that I would review it soon. I've had a lot of reading to do for work lately and it's been a slow process to the finish with AA, but I'm down to the final quarter and I just wanted to mention the sex scenes in the book for a few reasons.

I post a lot about erotic romance here because I have over 150 erotic romance books out and that's what I do. I've been doing this since college and I often find myself on the defense when it comes to writing sex scenes in books. Sex that's considered important to a storyline by some is often considered nothing but pure porn to another. So there's no disputing the fact that sex in books is subjective. And every single reader and author is going to have a slightly different opinion on the topic. And since there's no clear cut definition of porn yet, at least not to my knowledge, it becomes even more difficult and subjective.

The reason I'm mentioning the sex scenes in Franco's novel are purely pragmatic at this point. Franco takes a lot of heat as an author, and it's not my intention to criticize him now. It's not a review; it's only an observation. In the past year erotic romance writers have been dealing with censorship, book banning, and the unusual brand of misinterpretation of their books thanks to search engines that pick up one word and classify a book taboo based on nothing but misinterpretation. And I found it interesting that a book like Franco's that is so filled with graphic sex scenes has not once been mentioned in any of this controversy. And I'm not talking about sex scenes in a romance that move a story forward. I'm not talking about tender emotional sex scenes that add intimacy to a story. In Franco's book I'm talking about sex scenes that get down and dirty in ways that stunned me sometimes. It takes a lot to shock me at this point in my life.

I'm going to post a review for Actors Anonymous very soon. But I wanted to post about this because I find it interesting that authors like me get banned for discussing rape culture, innocently, in a book blurb in an academic way and authors like Franco slide right by with books that actually include rape in certain scenes and never once mention rape culture as a sensitive topic to readers. And there is no mention of this in the product description for Franco's book. If you didn't know ahead of time these elements are part of the book you would buy it, sit there in shock while one character goes down on another in MacDonalds' restroom, and wonder what kind of WTF-ery happened to you. And that's basically the reason authors like me have been going through book banning and censorship recently, because books like Franco's get pubbed and someone winds up reading something sexual he or she didn't expect. Then a shitstorm happens, some questionable publications like The Kernel jump onto the porn bandwagon, and authors like me have to makes changes to books that we intended to describe honestly and completely in the first place. I do have a book out that discusses rape culture. But I'm not glorifying rape. I'm talking about a brand of rape culture that affects millions of women and gay men all the time. Yet I get banned and books with rape scenes pass through the proverbial cracks. I just think readers should be aware of this, is all.

On the other hand, I'm actually enjoying Franco's book and when I post the review I might have a few surprises people didn't expect. My point is not to complain about Franco or slam anything he's written. I'm complaining about the way books are sold and presented to readers beforehand. Because in "fixing" my books that were banned so they wouldn't get caught in the crossfire of search engines, it took a way from the honesty I tried so hard to provide to the reader beforehand. I'll be posting a free excerpt of what I'm talking about with rape culture on Friday.

Adam Levine Sex Appeal

This morning on my way to the park where I run every day I heard them talking about Adam Levine being dubbed People Magazine's Sexiest Man Alive. Normally I turn that crap off and listen to music, but I thought the reaction was interesting. One of the DJ's, a man, didn't seem too thrilled with Levine as the Sexiest Man Alive. He kept repeating, in a snarky way, "V-neck, stubble, short, high-pitched voice, yeah that's sexy." And the other DJ, a woman, kept disagreeing with him.

Personally, I agree with the woman DJ. And I don't think that sexy is always associated with perfect good looks, height, or the kind of clothes a man wears. Sexy is more instinctive, and it becomes an almost sixth sense for some people...a sixth sense that usually includes all other five senses at the same time. In other words, sexy is more than an image of perfection. And if that wasn't true all those amateur adult entertainment web sites wouldn't be so popular.

In this next article it discusses how Levine might have been chosen Sexiest Man Alive, on purpose. Nothing is an accident anymore.

People Magazine‘s annual Sexiest Man Alive is a bloodbath of Hunger Gamesian proportions. Much like Highlander, there can only be one, and this year Maroon 5 frontman and he of the perpetual five o’clock shadow, Adam Levine, has decapitated his way to the front of the pack to earn the prestigious title. With only his sword and shield — his moves like Jagger and sultry/deadly piercing squint — as his guide, here’s how Levine outsexed the competition.
Full story here: http://www.queerty.com/photos-adam-levine-sexiest-man-alive-20131120/#ixzz2lCdWMKoo


Pastor Found Guilty

Earlier this week I posted about a minister who was charged for performing a marriage ceremony for his gay son and husband. Here's the result:

A jury has pronounced a pastor ‘guilty’ for violating and disobeying church law when he officiated a same-sex marriage for his son.

I know this is now international news, but because it happened in PA I saw clips of it all on my local Philadelphia news and actually got to see the minister and his family on TV. It's an emotional piece to read, and even more emotional to view because these people are not only brave, but also passionate about their beliefs.

You can read more here.




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